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Lindsey's Literary Leanings

Book Reviews - Contemporary Fiction / Biographies / Autobiographies

  • Lindsey Skelton-Smith

The Best Days of Our Lives (Author: Lucy Diamond)

Book Cover - The Best Days of Our Lives

Thought Provoking, Relatable, Intriguing

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Family Drama/Grief

The Best Days Of Our Lives By Lucy Diamond Leni and Alice weren't just sisters, they were best friends growing up. They were only a couple of years apart in age, sharing everything including a penchant for attempting to fly with the aid of their Grandma's fanned Peacock feathers. Then, some years later, along came Will and their parent's focus was somewhat distracted from the girls by all the time spent in hospital with their brother.

As the sisters grew they inevitably parted ways to follow different paths but always knew that they had each other's backs. Indeed, neither of them had once given a thought to what they would do without the other, and particularly if that special sibling bond were snatched away in the midst of a time of simmering vex and underlying jealousy.

She wasn't the only one of the McKenzie's to feel that words had been left unsaid... as the saying goes 'you never know what you've got till it's gone'.

Being a big L.D fan , I'd had it in mind to get round to reading this book, but with it being relatively new, it was priced above my book budget. I didn't want to just resort to KU, as it is my goal to own all of this Author's paperbacks. Then a few weeks ago my wonderful partner returned with it from the supermarket. Hurrah!!

This is a story about a fractured family, torn apart by deceit and who, through unimaginable tragedy, learn to appreciate each other as individuals and the roles that they play in each other's lives. As they gradually piece together the puzzle that they so carelessly let shatter all those years ago, and with it, form new connections, as well as re-connecting with old ones.

I've always been interested in the psychology of humans & have chosen my favourite Authors based on this. Although the stories are fiction, they are still someone's imagining of how a situation would play out if they were in the midst of it. It was heart breaking and moving to discover how this fictional family handled one of the worst curveballs that they can ever be thrown. The Prologue rather cleverly leads you to believe that one of the sisters will be the main character throughout the narrative, but in the first twist within the first couple.of chapters, you realise that this isn't so, or maybe it is. The story is then a slow burner, very gradually releasing detail about those inside the McKenzie fold & others outside of it. However, I found the first few chapters a little hard to concentrate on with the detail going off in different directions & introductions to characters and situations in quick succession. Things though became clear as the novel progressed.

The different imprints that the central incident has on all the main protaganists is thoroughly explored and differs widely but comes across as very real, giving the readers something that they can relate to, as I doubt there will be a Lucy Diamond reader who won't have found themselves in this situation regardless of the part they played. The turmoil amid the changing of relationships was astutely unravelled and the somewhat predictable conclusion that you may expect from a 'family re-united' narrative actually ends up as something a lot more thought through, uplifting & satisfying.

A novel that is typical of it's Author but with perhaps a slightly slower paced feeling than previously. Even so, it doesn't disappoint and takes the reader through several twists and turns that provoke all the emotions that you should expect to go through when reading a book penned by an established, first class Author.

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